Students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida suffered one of the worst school shootings since Columbine. The students could’ve stayed silent and mourned their fellow classmates but decided that wasn’t enough.
They began speaking out to various news outlet days after the shooting, shedding light on what they believe are faulty gun laws.
“A 19-year-old who can’t purchase an alcoholic beverage, should not be allowed to purchase an AR-15. A weapon of war, a weapon of destruction. It’s absolutely absurd” said Alex Wind, student at MSD High School.
Their strong voices prompted other teen advocacy groups to protest. Including one group, Teens for Gun Reform, staged a lie-in in front of the White House. The lie-in lasted for 3 minutes, the same amount of time it took the shooter to end 17 lives.
Over the weekend, students of MSD High School decided to raise awareness by establishing the Walk for Our Lives March. The march will take place March 24, 2018 in our nation’s capital and is pushing for changes to existing gun laws. Also bringing attention to politicians taking aid from the National Rifle Association. The group sees the NRA as a primary tool for pro-gun policies.
“On March 24 you are going to be seeing students in every single major city marching and we have our lives on the line” said Cameron Kasky, student at MSD High School.
The coverage in the main stream media started as positive, but when pushing divisive rhetoric critics are bound to come out. The Republican party has a strong connection to pro-gun rights, and with a GOP lead House and Senate criticism is going to be apparent.
“Let’s ask ourselves, do we really think, and I mean this sincerely. Do we think 17-year-olds, on their own, are going to plan a nation-wide protest” said Jack Kingston, former GOP Congressmen.
No matter the backlash that may come against the students of Parkland, they have got the attention of the entire country and In the age of social media that’s an important feat.